Philadelphia, PA – Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf vetoed Senate Bill 3, the bill that would limit abortions to the first 20 weeks of pregnancy and was deemed the most restrictive of its kind in the country by critics. Wolf was joined by Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney, legislators, local elected officials, and women’s reproductive rights advocates for the event in the Mayor’s Reception Room.
“This legislation is a disingenuous and bald-faced attempt to create the most extreme anti-choice legislation in the country,” Governor Wolf said in a press release. “This legislation is an attempt to criminalize the decisions that women make about their own health care, and this legislation destroys health care options for victims of the horrors of rape and incest. For these reasons, I am vetoing this bill today.”
Republicans could try to override Wolf’s veto, but it is unlikely they could muster the two-thirds majority needed to do so. The bill passed the House last week and the Senate in February.
The legislation, which passed the House by a 121-70 vote, would ban abortions after twenty weeks. Wolf says the bill would also ban one of the safest methods of second trimester abortions, putting women at risk and taking crucial decisions about their medical care out of the hands of their trusted medical providers. The bill provided some exceptions, like preventing the death of the mother.
Two of Wolf’s potential opponents in next year’s gubernatorial race, House Speaker Mike Turzai of Allegheny County and State Sen. Scott Wagner of York County, voted for the bill.
Wagner, who co-sponsored the bill, has released this statement;
“I’m extremely disappointed by Governor Wolf’s decision today to stand in the way of protecting the innocent lives of our unborn children by vetoing Senate Bill 3. Pennsylvania should have a governor who recognizes that each human life is precious and deserves to be treated as such. I stood up for the dignity of human life by co-sponsoring this bill in the Senate, and if given the opportunity as governor, I pledge to sign this legislation into law.”